Girvin just gets up at the wire to nose out McCraken in the July 31 Haskell at Monmouth Park

Girvin just gets up at the wire to nose out McCraken in the July 31 Haskell at Monmouth Park

Chad B. Harmon

Girvin, McCraken Rematch Possible in Travers

1-2 finishers in Haskell may face off again in Aug. 26 Travers. Haskell Invitational Stakes (G1) winner Girvin shipped to Saratoga Race Course the morning of July 31 after his victory by a nose over McCraken at Monmouth Park July 30.

If all goes well in the next few weeks, the son of Tale of Ekati  will make his next start in the $1.25 million Travers Stakes (G1) Aug. 26, said trainer Joe Sharp.

"More than likely, we'll run here," Sharp said. "That is the way we are leaning, but we will also look at the Smarty Jones (G3 at Parx Racing, Sept. 4) and the Pennsylvania Derby (G1, Sept. 23). We always keep our options open.

"He gives it his all every time, and he did that yesterday," he added. "He never wins by a lot. He likes to engage other horses, he likes to be in a dogfight. (It) makes it fun to be around him. He is a very honest horse, he tries very, very hard. He continues to go above and beyond our expectations."

Brad Grady's Louisiana Derby (G2) winner finished 13th in the Kentucky Derby Presented by Yum! Brands (G1) before finishing as the runner-up to Irap in the Ohio Derby (G3). The Travers would be Girvin's eighth career start.

A Haskell rematch could be in the works in the Travers as Ian Wilkes, trainer of runner-up McCraken, who also returned to the Spa Monday, expressed his team's intentions to point to the Mid-Summer Derby as well.

"Yeah, I am planning on it—the Travers," Wilkes said. "As long as he trains well, because I'm not just going to run him just to run him. A final decision will be made in a few days after we get him back to the track."

The son of Ghostzapper  finished eighth in the Kentucky Derby, but returned to win the Matt Winn Stakes (G3) at Churchill Downs in his previous start before the Haskell. The Whitham Thoroughbreds homebred was the winner of the Sam F. Davis Stakes (G3) and ran third in the Toyota Blue Grass Stakes (G2) earlier this year.